Because of my intense burden to reach this generation and the next ones with the truth of God’s Word and the gospel, we have just made a big decision at the Creation Museum. I think it will thrill you.
I’ll also explain why this is a big faith step for us, but one I believe should be made.
As part of our 2013–2014 theme “Standing Our Ground—Rescuing Our Kids” (Galatians 1:4), we have decided to do something very special to help teach children the truth concerning the Bible: For the entire coming year, January 1 through December 31, 2014, we are going to allow all kids who are 12 years old and under to come to the Creation Museum free of charge! The only stipulation is that the children must be accompanied by at least one paying adult.* (Kids have to be accompanied by an adult anyway in the museum.) I’m sure you are as excited as we are about this wonderful new outreach.
I want to encourage adults to round up as many kids as they can and bring them to the Creation Museum in 2014. One idea would be that your family could offer to pay for an adult friend’s admission and have that person bring their kids (and even their kids’ friends) for free as a way of witnessing to them—or encouraging them in the Christian faith if they are believers. I’m sure each of us can come up with all sorts of similar ideas to reach children. Let’s make 2014 the “year of the kids” at the Creation Museum!
But why is this such a big faith-step for us? You see, the Creation Museum, unlike most secular evolutionist museums across the country, does not receive federal or state tax money to support it. AiG can’t go to the government and request for a levy (as a secular museum typically does) and thus ask the local community to provide our museum with tens of thousands or millions of dollars. As you recall, the Creation Museum was built by private funding. Many thousands of people gave sacrificially to enable the Creation Museum to be built.
Now, such a high-tech facility like ours costs a lot of money to operate and maintain. Not only do we need to pay for the day-to-day operations of such a large museum, but also for the upkeep and maintenance. In fact, maintenance is a major component for the museum’s daily operations costs. Technology needs to be maintained, updated, and replaced. And in a fallen world, everything wears out and needs constant upkeep. Our bill each year just to install new bulbs for our projectors is huge.
Even in what we think of as the “little things,” you would be surprised to find what it takes to maintain the Creation Museum. For instance, we go through 300 miles of paper towels each year, over 150 gallons of soap, and 430 miles of toilet paper! We have had to be realistic about charging an admission fee for people to visit the Creation Museum. We are thrilled that the ticket revenue helps pay for the day-to-day running costs (including housekeeping and normal maintenance).
Whenever we need to renovate or replace an existing exhibit or build a new one, we have had to raise donations to cover those design and construction costs. And we praise the Lord for the generosity of our supporters who have enabled us to continue to add first-class exhibits. In fact, the Lord has enabled us to build a museum that is valued at way over $100 million, but to date we’ve only spent around $35 million!
Our calculations have shown that income from paid children’s tickets for ages 5–12 this past year brought in around $225,000. So, to allow all children 12 and under to visit free is going to significantly impact our bottom line for the Creation Museum.
But I believe it’s imperative that we help parents and other adults to bring as many children as possible to the Bible-proclaiming and evangelistic Creation Museum. You are aware that the Bible-upholding information that AiG makes available through the museum and our other outreaches is by and large censored from the culture. The secularists don’t want children to hear the life-changing information we present. They know it will cause many of them to look seriously at God’s Word and listen to the saving message of the gospel.
The god of this world is doing all he can to capture your children! With God’s help and your support, we need to rescue them! We are burdened to see all these dear children’s hearts captured for the Lord Jesus Christ—the Creator God and the God of salvation.
Now, this is where I need your help for this great outreach to our younger generation. As we have taken this big step of faith, we are sharing this incredible museum opportunity with you as together we can help reach children through the Creation Museum. I am asking you to prayerfully consider a generous year-end gift to help AiG and allow us to offer all these children to visit the Creation Museum at no charge.
And may I ask you to encourage your church body and your other friends to see what they can do to bring as many children as possible to the Creation Museum in 2014?
And please also pray for the opposition we will no doubt receive to this outreach to children. The secularists will be very upset that we will be reaching out to kids. In the past, I’ve found that the secularists become the most emotional in their attacks on our ministry when they know we’re reaching children with the truth of God’s Word. (See Is It Child Abuse to Teach Christianity to Your Children? Dawkins Thinks So.)
I hesitate to conclude my letter to you by quoting from an evil man. But really, this quote from Adolf Hitler should remind us of how the secular world can view children:
He alone, who owns the youth, gains the future!
In Joshua 4, we read the account of the miracle of the Israelites crossing the Jordan River. After they crossed, the people were told by Joshua to set up a memorial of 12 stones:
“That this may be a sign among you when your children ask in time to come, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’” (Joshua 4:6)
This passage goes on to explain that the children were supposed to be reminded of what God had done for the Israelites—and that the adults were to pass on the spiritual legacy to the next generation. Sadly we read later that this teaching didn’t happen and the next generation was lost to the pagan gods!
Today in our culture, generations are learning about fossils and places like the Grand Canyon. Many children, teens, and adults are asking: “What mean these stones?” Sadly, most of them are being told in schools, secular museums, and in the media that these “stones” are evidence of evolution and millions of years!
Oh how we need to remind children and adults of the truth of creation, the entrance of sin and death, the Flood, and the saving gospel message! Will you help us reach as many children as we can with this special program in 2014? We need not only your financial help, but also your help in bringing children to the museum.
Last year, a total of about 40,000 children (up to age 12) visited the Creation Museum. How about we try to increase this figure by 50 percent for 2014—to 60,000 kids? Let’s reach as many children as we can through this new Creation Museum outreach! We will keep count of the number of children who visit next year and will provide regular updates on our Creation Museum website so you will be able to follow the numbers with me.
Thanks for prayerfully considering being a part of this “Rescuing Our Kids” project for the coming year!
Kids 12 and under receive free general admission with paid, full-priced adult general admission. Offer cannot be applied to prepurchased tickets or combined with any other discounts or offers. No photocopies or facsimiles will be accepted. Additional restrictions may apply. The right of final interpretation lies with the Creation Museum, Petersburg, KY. Not for resale.
For the safety and enjoyment of all guests, we ask that children ages 12 and under be accompanied by an appropriate number of responsible adults at all times. back
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